Plants in the News, October 30 2015: Oxford Plants 400

The 400th anniversary of the founding of plant science at Oxford will be celebrated on July 25 2021 (see its history). As a celebration and count-down to this anniversary, the University of Oxford Botanic Garden and Harcourt Arboretum, together with the Oxford University Herbaria and the Department of Plant Sciences, are highlighting 400 plants of … Read more

PlantingScience Awarded $2.9M Grant from the National Science Foundation

ASPB collaborates on this science teacher training and development program. The Botanical Society of America (BSA), the American Society of Plant Biologists and the Biological Sciences Curriculum Study (BSCS) have been awarded a $2.9 million grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) Discovery Research PreK-12 program for further development and support for the middle and … Read more

Plants in the News, October 16 2015: Marvellous Mangroves

This week we feature mangroves, a polyphyletic group of plants that live in tropical intertidal zones. Mangroves are in the news as a consequence of a new paper out in Nature (Lovelock et al., 2015) that describes their great vulnerability to sea-level rise (see also Saintilan et al., 2015).   Mangrove is a term used … Read more

ASPB Collaborates: the Promoting Active Learning & Mentoring Network Grant

ASPB joins the American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB) and Genetics Society of America (GSA) to establish the new Promoting Active Learning & Mentoring (PALM) Network grant program for improving undergraduate classroom teaching and learning outcomes. Sue Wick (University of Minnesota) is the lead PI. Sue is a member of ASPB and ASCB. The program … Read more

Disciplinary Societies Affiliation: Next Generation Careers – Innovation in Environmental Biology Education

ASPB is joining forces with other societies on an NSF incubator grant. Career development options – Next Generation Careers – Innovation in Environmental Biology Education (NGC) will seed a new network to support workforce development for college graduate career progression into environmental biology, including fields such as ecology, evolution, conservation, and natural resource management. New … Read more

U.S. Botanic Garden + ASPB = Creating a Plant Presence

ASPB is leading a team to produce public outreach and education materials for use in the U.S. Botanic Garden, the USA Science and Engineering Festival and beyond. The U.S. Botanic Garden (USBG) in Washington, DC, and ASPB – through its Education Committee, will collaborate on a new project to educate the public about the diverse … Read more

Plants in the News, October 9 2015: Artemisia annua and coral bleaching

The biggest news in plant science is the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine to Tu Youyou for her discovery and development of the antimalarial drug artemisinin from the plant Artemisia annua. The other half of the prize was shared by Satoshi Ōmura and William C. Campbell for the development avermectins, also … Read more

Winning entries of the August 2015 “Teaching Tools Proposal” competition

We had many excellent proposals submitted for the second round of the the “Teaching Tools in Plant Biology” competition, from which we selected two for further development. The competition has one additional submission deadline December 31 2015, and full details can be found at http://blog.aspb.org/2015/03/02/share-your-enthusiasm-teaching-tools-submission-competition/. Here are the two winning proposals and their authors from … Read more

Plants in the News, 2 October: Cannabis, entry point to plant science or plant-that-must-not-be-named?

  This week, Nature published an excellent Outlook on cannabis science and policy. How do you feel about cannabis as a topic of discussion in the classroom? I’ve tended to shy away from it – in my experience the benefit of increased interest can be outweighed by the distraction of giggles and jokes. However, this … Read more

Countdown to The Martian

I’m excited to see so many people writing about The Botanist .. er The Martian, including: Alun Salt in AoB Blog (Incidently, Alun wrote about the book back in 2014, inspring me and others to read it), Adam Rutherford in the Guardian, and Chris Martine in HuffPost (who, very coolly, just named a new species … Read more

Plants in the News, Sept 25 2015: Wheat

In honor of the International Wheat Conference 2015 (#IWC2015), this week’s Plants in the News focuses on wheat. For an overview, one of the best sources of information about wheat science is Peter Shewry’s Darwin Review, simply titled “Wheat”; see also an excellent perspective in the Economist. Global wheat production Wheat provides 20% of global … Read more

“From atom to planet in 90 seconds”: my experience and tips from the ‘Discover Plant Science’ micro-film

Mary Williams spoke about the potential for plant science outreach films in a recent blog post. In this blog post, I’ll share my own experience in commissioning a 90-second film for www.intobiology.org.uk. “For biology, it has to be visual,” Katie said. A 17 year old who’d left behind her old friends to transfer to a … Read more

Plants in the News, September 11 2015

This week’s episode has the theme of “Videos”. There are not enough good videos about plant science, but there’s a lot of talent out there, how about making an engaging video as your outreach project for the year? To get you started, here’s a video from the Eden Channel about how to make a great … Read more

Plants in the News, September 4 2015

Welcome to Episode 4 of our weekly feature, Plants in the News. These stories are selected to provide educators with interesting and accessible news from the world of plant science. Although some of the stories we feature are based on articles with restricted access, we also provide links to news summaries that are available without … Read more

My introduction to Process Oriented Guided Inquiry Learning (POGIL) ~ thanks to Master Educator Program

Engaging through POGIL – I had the opportunity thanks to the ASPB Master Educator Program to attend my first POGIL workshop (https://pogil.org/) in June of this year, accompanied by three of my Alfred University Biology colleagues. Our curriculum is in the process of revision to meet Vision and Change and the ASPB Core Concepts in … Read more

Creating a Pipeline for Food & Ag Careers Starts in Elementary School

Re-posted with permission from Robin Habeger’s blog A strong food and agricultural science education system is important for many reasons. The current release of the AGree paper titled Food and Agricultural Education in the United States highlights the need for parents, educators and policy makers to advocate for the inclusion of food and agricultural science … Read more

Lights, camera, action! Prepare for a botanist to take center stage!

“The Martian” opens October 2. Why should you care? Because it is one of the most-anticipated movies of the year and it features a botanist, played by Matt Damon, in the lead role. Here’s the trailer. Botanists have appeared in big films previously; Laura Dern’s character in Jurassic Park (1993) was a paleobotanist, which is … Read more

ASPB’s Newest Education & Outreach Partner: the Wiki Education Foundation

  The debut of Wiki Edu’s new course design tools  at Plant Biology 2015.   Wiki Ed has been eager to show off the course design and monitoring tools that we launched last month. We had our first chance to do so in late July, when Outreach Manager Samantha Erickson and I attended the American … Read more

Conference Tweeting for Plant Scientists Part 1: Twitter basics

Twitter is quickly becoming the platform of choice for connections and communications at scientific conferences and beyond. The current culture of science, which values openness, accessibility and broad participation, is enhanced by the barrier-free Twitter environment; everyone has an equal right to participate in Twitter conversations. At several conferences this summer I’ve been asked for … Read more